The National Centre for Social and Economic Modelling (Natsem) has released figures showing the increase in Australian living standards. In a concerning turn of events they found the wealthiest among us are experiencing the biggest gains of all.

The top 20 per cent wealthiest households enjoyed an 18 per cent rise in living standards over the last quarter of a century. This was twice the rate of those at the lower end of the economic spectrum.

Couples without children in the higher bracket fared best; while single parent households in the lower income bracket fared worst.

The report was produced in conjunction with SAS Business Analytics. Together the two research bodies found that living standards began to level off from June 2012 until June 2014, in the wake of two decades of gradual gains .

Since then living standards have begun again to rise. This was put down to the dissolution of the carbon tax and the plummeting price of oil. The concern is about what will happen when energy prices begin to rise again.

The historic low interest rates have benefited wealthier house holds more than poorer ones. Those in the highest bracket enjoyed an average of $536 a year due to low interest rates; while poorer households benefited, on average, by $498 per annum.

Retirees, however, have seen the low interest rate as a negative,. Where mortgage holders enjoy paying less interest superannuants receive less on their nest egg.

Tasmania suffered the poorest living improvement figures, while the Northern Territory enjoyed the best.

The construction boom fueled New South Wales’ increased living standards, which out performed all other states in the east.

In the end it was estimated the average Australian is 59 per cent better off than they were in December 1988. This figure took into account the cost of living.

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